In July this year, the EU released the proposal for a new End-of-Life Vehicle (ELV) regulation that defines not only what has to be done at the end-of-life of cars, but also what measures need to be taken for new vehicles brought on the market. It contains specific measures for plastic materials, which include also reinforce plastics or composites. One of these measures is the obligation that for new cars, 25% of the weight of plastic materials should come from post-consumer recycled material (PCR), and from that amount, 25% should come from the same vehicle type. Some other measures are e.g. the obligation for OEMs to provide a circularity strategy, and to design such that components can easily be removed at recycling facilities. Clearly, these measures will influence the design of plastic and composite parts, and need thorough thinking on how to apply a circular design strategy. For this reason, AZL has held an informative webinar regarding this topic.
In the webinar with 267 participants, it was explained why the new regulation is replacing the old directive, and what the main objectives are for the new regulation. Currently, plastics in cars are hardly recycled, and this should improve, and the design should focus more on circularity.
Changes to the treatment of plastics in end-of life cars are explained, as well as changes in the design of new cars, such as which components need to be removable, and what will happen with battery packs of electric vehicles.
Further, the responsibilities of OEMs are treated.
Details that are not included in the new proposal are also mentioned, such as e.g. a life cycle analysis on CO2 emissions.
Open discussion points or unclear definitions are still there, e.g. on the circularity of composite materials.
The proposal is still open for commenting until October 24th (status as of August 29th).
The final regulation is expected to be effective somewhere in 2024, then resulting in the new recycling percentages to become effective somewhere in 2030.
Anyway, it is to be expected that designing with composite materials from now on won’t focus anymore on maximum weight saving against minimum cost only, but also on recyclability. Design for recycling is expected to be the next major topic for automotive components.
The content of the webinar is available for download. Contact the AZL team for more information or questions on this new regulation proposal. Discuss with us on how to design for recycling, or design with recycled materials.
By the way: Did you know that cost efficiency and sustainability are key concepts for the majority of AZL’s activities and projects? Not only are they an integral part of our ongoing and upcoming Joint Partner Projects, but also focus of our individual consulting service „Pragmatic Product Carbon Footprint & Life Cycle Assessment“. Get in touch!